The holiday season typically results in increased gift card sales. Increased gift card sales unfortunately means an increase in gift card scams, as well. WFTV in Orlando recently reported on a new technique being used to steal gift card numbers. A student in Winter Park, FL, decided to sell a $150 Target gift card on Craigslist; she found a buyer willing to pay $100. The buyer wanted to confirm the card balance first, and suggested a a three-way call between the buyer, the seller, and Target’s automated balance check system. This way, the seller could just enter the numbers on the phone keypad without having to say them out loud, and the buyer could hear the balance available on the card. The problem with this is that the touch tones can be heard by all parties on the call, and the buyer can record, decode, and use the card numbers. The buyer never showed up to buy the card; by that point the card had already been emptied.
The lesson here is that scammers are working hard to come up with new methods to scam people out of their money. One easy way to avoid this new scam is to not sell your gift cards on sites like craigslist. GiftCards.com is a great place to sell unwanted gift cards and quickly receive payment. For example, the student in Winter Park could have used GiftCards.com and received $138 for her $150 Target gift card. That’s $38 more than the scammer was offering, plus she would have actually received her money. GiftCards.com is the safer, more reliable option for turning unwanted gift cards into cash.